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Cambridge chef sets world record for most fast-food restaurants visited in 24 hours

Nick DiGiovanni and Lynn Davis pose with Guinness World Records adjudicator Andrew Glass after visiting a record-setting 69 fast-food restaurants within 24 hours.Tim Davis

Nick DiGiovanni, a TikTok-famous chef in Cambridge known for his stint on “MasterChef” in 2019, has set yet another food-related Guinness World Record.

DiGiovanni and frequent collaborator Lynn Davis (or “Lynja” to her 11.9 million Tik Tok followers) set a record for visiting the most fast-food restaurants in 24 hours — and they did it in eight hours.

The pair, along with a team that included cameramen and a Guinness World Records representative, traveled to New York on Aug. 10 and ordered from 69 fast-food spots from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

DiGiovanni, a Barrington, R.I., native and Harvard alum, explained that “the hardest part of the record to me, by far, was the actual physical aspect.” Per the Guinness World Records’ rules, the team had to either walk or take public transit to get to each restaurant. And because no one had set the record before, Guinness World Records told the duo how many restaurants they had to visit in order to set the record.

“Every second counted,” DiGiovanni said, so the group jogged between many of the locations they visited. According to DiGiovanni’s manager, Zach Blank, who planned out the group’s route across New York City, they covered about eight miles over the course of the day.

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DiGiovanni has loved fast food since he was a kid, and a lot of his viral online videos are fast-food related. In June, he broke the Guinness World Record for creating the world’s largest chicken nugget. The YouTube video documenting that record-breaking process currently has 41 million views. DiGiovanni has also made several videos where he travels to fast-food restaurants and cooks up his own version of whatever he’s ordered.

DiGiovanni doesn’t have a favorite fast-food place; instead, he has a “favorite item.” His “dream meal” would be “a Popeyes crispy chicken sandwich with some Chick-fil-A sauce on it and a side of McDonald’s french fries,” he explained.

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Of course, with 69 restaurants to visit, the team didn’t end up eating everything they ordered. DiGiovanni explained that they gave most of their food away, often to unhoused people they met as they ran through the city.

DiGiovanni and Davis pose outside of a McDonald's.Tim Davis

That was good news for Davis, who, unlike Nick, is not a fast-food fan. “I don’t like fast food at all,” she laughed (aside from an occasional frozen matcha latte from Dunkin’). The “regular mom with killer cooking skills,” as her TikTok bio puts it, joined the challenge because she loves “just working with Nick,” Davis explained. “I have so much fun — he’s just a marvelous young man.”

This is DiGiovanni and Davis’s third world record together. The pair first began working together after DiGiovanni sent Davis an Instagram message in 2020, and the rest is history.

DiGiovanni says he doesn’t have a dream record, per se, but “the ultimate goal with everything is just kind of, through all the fun and excitement . . . to actually make an impact in some way.”

With that in mind, he and his team are already looking ahead, and more record-breaking adventures are in the works.

“The same night we finished this one, Nick and I were talking about — what’s the next Guinness World Record we can break,” DiGiovanni’s manager Blank said.

Right now, they’re eyeing the world record for most turkeys donated in 24 hours, so stay tuned around Thanksgiving.

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Joy Ashford can be reached at joy.ashford@globe.com. Follow them on Twitter @joy_ashford.